Monthly Archives: March 2009

Adaptations in Film

The basic story of King Lear goes back to ancient English myths. The general idea of three daughters, two wicked and one good, with arbitrary love tests, goes back at least to a second century AD novel by Apuleius called The Golden Ass. A play was written for the English stage around the mythical King […]

Natasha Richardson

Natasha Richardson (1963 – 2009) GREAT PERFORMANCES mourns the passing of Natasha Richardson, whose theatrical brilliance captivated public television audiences in 1993 with GP’s telecast of Tennessee Williams’ “Suddenly, Last Summer.” A great talent and enduring friend of the theater, she also joined her husband Liam Neeson to co-host the STAGE ON SCREEN telecast of […]

King Lear Films

We are blessed with eleven film versions of King Lear (including the announced release of the McKellen film).  While we might say that some are better than others, each has value and interest.  Indeed, a more useful distinction might be between those taking a conventional approach to the play compared to those veering into experimental […]


Renée Fleming is Egyptian courtesan Thaïs in Jules Massenet’s perfumed tale of lust and salvation Saturday, March 28 at noon on Great Performances at the Met on PBS HD (check local listings). Joining the soprano is brilliant baritone Thomas Hampson as the tortured monk Athanaël, who falls from grace in his attempt to lead the […]

The Metropolitan Opera Opening Night Gala Starring Renee Fleming

There are galas and then there’s The Metropolitan Opera Opening Night Gala Starring Renée Fleming, premiering this March on Great Performances at the Met on PBS HD, premiering March 14th at 8pm. (in New York, the premier will be for SundayArts March 15th at noon. See more on the SundayArts Web site.) Recorded last September […]